Turkey from the Farm

This post is also available in: Italiano

Turkey, in the Italian and American tradition, is associated with Christmas and Thanksgiving. This combination is not random but linked to the cycles of nature. In fact, turkeys were born in the spring and reached maturity in November and December. They were the most noble and delicate meat families had to celebrate the most special day of the year. With the harvest stashed in cellars and barns, you could thank the divine providence and enjoy, in a moment of well deserved rest, the best products from the earth and the work that men gave. Today the turkey, especially the breast, is a meat we eat it all year long, but sometimes it is good to remember the natural cycle of things.

On Christmas my family uses turkey as a main dish for lunch. Throughout the year many recipes and variations have been tried but this method to prepare turkey is certainly the most easy and tasty.

I would like to propose the thigh of the turkey because it is delicious and fairly small. Of course this is a dish that I use several times during the colder seasons, especially when we have a lot of people.

The turkey needs a good amount of time in the oven. This will allow you to use your time for other tasks in the kitchen. In fact, it is good to monitor the cooking, and about every 30 minutes remove the pan from the oven and baste the meat with its sauce so the meat is soft and it develops a beautiful crispy skin. The turkey needs little seasoning because the skin alone provides the necessary fat.

Preparation time: 60 minutes | Cooking time: 180 minutes
(For 8 people)

2 turkey thighs (about 5 pounds)
2 pounds of peeled Italian white pearl onions (Borettane onions)
2 pounds of potatoes
1 pound of carrots
sage, rosemary, thyme, and marjoram
2 cups white wine
2 shallots
4 garlic cloves
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper

  • Preheat oven to 500°F.
  • In a large oven-proof skillet, add the olive oil, garlic, shallots, and herbs. Place turkey thighs and brown on high heat, about 10 minutes per side. Pour in the wine and continue cooking for a few minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Insert the pan in a preheated oven, lowering the temperature to 400°F, taking care to cover the legs with aluminum foil to avoid over cooking without cooking the inside. After a half an hour, turn over the thighs, leaving the turkey covered in the aluminum foil.
  • Meanwhile prepare the vegetables. Wash the onions, peel the potatoes and cut into fairly large pieces, then peel the carrots and cut them to pieces. After an hour, remove the foil and continue cooking for another 30 minutes, basting the meat with the cooking juices.
  • Then add the vegetables into the pan, taking care to leave the turkey thigh on top. Let the vegetables cook in the liquid and taste the sauce adding salt if necessary and pepper. Continue cooking for about an hour making sure the vegetables are tender and the meat can be easily pierced with a fork.
  • In a large serving platter arrange meat surrounded by the vegetables. The meat should be cut and served at the table.


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